Generally, almost any piece of cinema can fit comfortably within one of two categories: it is either a film which revolves around plot or a film based on mood. And what is clear from the outset of The Bad Batch is that it is most definitely the latter.
Before watching this film, I have to admit I was skeptical. I hadn’t heard great things about it. With a very mixed bag of reviews, including a barely there Metacritic score of 61 and just 44% on Rotten Tomatoes, it wasn’t shaping up well, even before it started rolling. However, I have to say I was pleasantly surprised. The film has an oddly hazy brutality and offhand charm which is utterly entrancing to those who surrender themselves to it.
The basic premise, which is not given up easily to the viewer, is that those whom mainstream society deem to be undesirable, whether they are criminals, oddballs or just illegal immigrants, have been branded as ‘the bad batch’. They are henceforth exiled to desolate, fenced-off Texas desert to live out their lives separate from civilisation and the rule of law.